AcademicsNeal Weiner— Philosophy
Neal joined the Marlboro faculty in 1970, after being a Woodrow Wilson Fellow at the University of Chicago and a Danforth Fellow at the University of Texas, where he did his doctoral work on Plato. His teaching here places special emphasis on the history of philosophy for, as he argues, "the study of history of thought stretches our minds so as to make us encompass possibilities of thought and action quite different from our own. Without understanding them, we cannot understand ourselves. But philosophy is not history. In the end, historical imagination must bow to relevance and simple truth."
Neal believes that these ideals are best realized in a classroom style which avoids formal lectures. He favors the close scrutiny of ideas in seminars where free give-and-take is limited only by students' ability to explain and defend their thoughts.
His approach to philosophy is broad. Neal has taught political theory, literature, and psychology, as well as traditional philosophy courses. He helped design Marlboro’s Seminar in Religion, Literature and Philosophy and has recently completed a book examining the ethical dimensions of the idea of mental health.
A.B., St. John’s College, Annapolis, Maryland, 1964; University of Chicago, 1964 - 1965; Ph.D., University of Texas, 1969; Woodrow Wilson Fellow, 1964 - 1965; Danforth Fellow, 1965 - 1968; Assistant Professor, SUNY, Old Westbury, 1968 - 1970, Marlboro College, 1970